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Finalist - Outstanding Achievement in Story: 2014 DICE Awards Finalist - Gamer's Voice Award: SXSW Gaming Expo The Novelist asks one central question: can you achieve your dreams without pushing away the people you love?
Release Date: Dec 10, 2013
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Buy The Novelist

$14.99

Recent updates View all (6)

On Sale!

May 6th, 2014

Hey, everyone, I wanted to quickly let you know the game is part of the Humble Spring Sale here.

I didn't know that the Humble Spring Sale was coming when I put the game on a Weeklong Deal here last month, and unfortunately there is a two-month waiting period for sales here on Steam. This means that I'm prevented from reflecting the same 50% discount here on Steam. :-/

That said, Humble sales do come with a Steam key, so you can buy it there and then activate your game on Steam via your Humble account.

Sorry for the confusion, but I hope you enjoy the deal!

0 comments Read more

New Update! 50% Off!

April 7th, 2014

Hey everyone, just a quick note to let you know that the game is 50% off this week as part of Steam's Weeklong Deals.

There's also a new patch to the game with two important changes.

You can read more about everything here.

3 comments Read more

Reviews

“The Novelist affected me, deeply and painfully ... I frequently cried at the outcomes of the decisions I made for the Kaplan family.”
Rock Paper Shotgun

“While it arrives on the heels of other notable non-combat, story-based games, it still manages to feel fresh and emotionally resonant. This is thanks to sincere, realistic writing and an inspired approach to player choice, which has you picking sides and making difficult compromises in the context of family conflicts.”
Polygon

“The Novelist is the most personal and beautiful game I have ever experienced. The creator, Kent Hudson, has quite plainly poured his heart and soul into this game, and the outcome is genuinely something to behold. Never before have I felt so emotionally involved in the characters, their situation and potential future, as in this truly player-driven story.”
10 out of 10 – GameGrin

About the Game

Finalist - Outstanding Achievement in Story: 2014 DICE Awards
Finalist - Gamer's Voice Award: SXSW Gaming Expo

The Novelist asks one central question: can you achieve your dreams without pushing away the people you love? The game focuses on Dan Kaplan, a novelist struggling to write the most important book of his career while trying to be the best husband and father he can be. The Kaplans have come to a remote coastal home for the summer, unaware that they’re sharing the house with a mysterious ghostly presence: you.

Read the family’s thoughts. Explore their memories. Uncover their desires and intervene in their lives. But stay out of sight; you can’t help the Kaplans if they know there’s a ghost in the house. It’s up to you to decide how Dan’s career and family life will evolve, but choose carefully; there are no easy answers, and every choice has a cost.

Dan’s relationships – to his work, his wife, and his son – react and shift in response to your choices. With a different sequence of events in every playthrough, The Novelist gives life to a unique experience each time you play.

The decisions you make will define the Kaplans’ lives, but they may also tell you something about yourself.

PC System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP SP2 or higher
    • Processor: 1.8 GHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 256 MB VRAM video card
    • Hard Drive: 800 MB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: 2 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB VRAM video card

Mac System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: OS X Lion (10.7) or higher
    • Processor: 1.8 GHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 256 MB VRAM video card
    • Hard Drive: 800 MB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: OS X Mountain Lion (10.8)
    • Processor: 2 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB VRAM video card

Linux System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • Processor: 1.8 GHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 256 MB VRAM video card
    • Hard Drive: 800 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Built with Unity 4.3.4, tested in Ubuntu 12.04 and 13.10
    Recommended:
    • Processor: 2 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB VRAM video card
Helpful customer reviews
27 of 30 people (90%) found this review helpful
967 products in account
5 reviews
3.7 hrs on record
This game made me confront the fact that I was slowly destroying my relationship with my partner through neglect. That it was able to speak to me on such a human level is probably the greatest accolade I could give it.
Posted: May 20th, 2014
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11 of 12 people (92%) found this review helpful
945 products in account
3 reviews
2.4 hrs on record
This game is a brilliant change of pace from a lot of other games. I'm not sure if I've ever seen a game that fits into 'real life' (define that however you wish) so well as this one. A lot of the scenarios in here are perfect practice for what people would really want out of life, and I'm learning things about myself playing this. It's really interesting.

Certainly may not be for everybody, but nothing worth anything ever is.
Posted: March 23rd, 2014
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
190 products in account
2 reviews
1.8 hrs on record
Lovely Story, nice writing, nice voice over. I learned actually something about myself while playing it :D
Posted: April 9th, 2014
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
460 products in account
5 reviews
3.0 hrs on record
Excellent storytelling, excellent voice acting, although not much gameplay - essentially fetch quests with an interesting plot. Was FAR too short in my opinion - took me 2 hours. THis is forgivable in my case, only payed £2.50 with Humble Bundle, however my friend payed £9. He has not played yet, but he thinks 2 hours is not worth that pricetag. If you can get it for <£5, go for it :)
Posted: May 13th, 2014
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
104 products in account
3 reviews
2.2 hrs on record
I just finished this, and all I can say is it is probably one of the best games I have ever played. People interested in intricate gameplay might be dissapointed with the simple controls and limited actions, but the story has tons of different outcomes, and i'm already halfway through my second playthrough! Oh god, the story is amazing. It is so real and so raw. The art style is also really beautiful, and the side-story of the ghost that you play as is really cool. I love this game and would recommend it to anyone.
Posted: April 28th, 2014
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419 of 465 people (90%) found this review helpful
588 products in account
2 reviews
2.1 hrs on record
The Novelist is a 'narrative adventure' that is similar in many ways to games like Gone Home and Dear Esther, which is to say that it's not everybody's cup of tea. That being said, if you enjoyed those games or are open to experiencing a mature and realistic story, you might find that you enjoy The Novelist as much as I did. You play as a 'ghost' (for lack of a better word) that observes and influences a family of three (Dan, Linda, and their son Tommy) during a summer spent in the Oregon countryside. The game is sub-divided into 12 chapters, each of which has a central problem such as a family member drinking too much, a death in the family, or a child's difficulties learning. Your task is to explore the thoughts and memories of each family member and determine how they would deal with the outcome in the way most desirable for them. Inevitably this leads to a prioritization of people that results in a lot of uncomfortable trade-offs: Do encourage Dan to spend more time on his novel at the expense of his relationship with his wife and son? Or, do you make the family spend as much time together as possible at the risk of their professional obligations? And, perhaps more importantly, which of these outcomes do you choose consistently?

This is a game that you may only get 2-3 hours of playtime out of, but I valued those 2-3 hours a great deal.
Posted: December 9th, 2013
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Awards

Finalist - Outstanding Achievement in Story: 2014 DICE Awards
Finalist - Gamer's Voice Award: SXSW Gaming Expo
Indie Game of the Year: Continue Play